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How to Care for Brugmansia

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How to Care for Brugmansia

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Overview

Brugmansia, a tropical shrub more commonly known as angel's trumpet, produces large, tubular, trumpet-shaped blossoms in shades of white, yellow and peach. The fragrant blooms appear in late spring and persist until fall. In frost-free areas, the flowers may last nearly year-round. Native to the Andes of South America, brugmansia prefers warm growing conditions and will not survive winter outdoors above USDA Hardiness Zone 8. Gardeners in cooler climates typically treat brugmansia as an annual or plant in containers to bring indoors over winter. Although considered a slow-grower, the plant may reach heights of up to 6 feet in a single season with proper care.

Step 1

Plant brugmansia during mid-spring in a location that consists of moderately moist, fertile soil and receives direct, full sunlight. Cultivate the soil with a garden tiller to a depth of at least 6 inches before planting to loosen the growing medium and improve drainage. Space brugmansia plants 3 to 4 feet apart.

Step 2

Water the plant about once every four to five days, just enough to keep the soil consistently moist. Water to a depth of about 6 inches at each application to provide sufficient moisture. Do not allow the roots to become waterlogged, which may cause rotting.

Step 3

Feed brugmansia once per month during the active growing season with a 10-10-10 NPK fertilizer to accelerate growth and boost flower development. Follow the manufacturer's application instructions for proper dosage. Water the soil lightly prior to feeding to avoid injuring the plant's roots.

Step 4

Prune the plant with sterile pruning shears during early spring, just before active growth resumes. Remove any diseased or damaged limbs and cut back any excessively long branches to improve the plant's appearance and overall health.

Step 5

Lift brugmansia from the soil during fall, just prior to the season's first frost. Plant in a container large enough to house the root system without crowding. Transfer the plant to a location with temperatures of 40 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit and water about once every two to three weeks. Replant in the original location the following spring, after the final frost of winter.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not plant in a location accessible by pets or children, as all parts are toxic and may cause serious illness or death if consumed.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden tiller
  • Fertilizer
  • Pruning shears
  • Container

References

  • University of Vermont: Brugmansia
  • Fine Gardening: Genus Brugmansia (Angels' Trumpets)
  • "Taylor's Guide to Shrubs"; Kathleen Fisher; 2001
  • "Taylor's Guide to Annuals"; Barbara W. Ellis; 1999

Who Can Help

  • The United States National Arboretum: USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map
Keywords: brugmansia plant care, angel's trumpet care, growing brugmansia plant

About this Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including Gardenguides.com.

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